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The Deep Blue Goodbye (Crime Masterworks) [Paperback]

John D. MacDonald
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

21 Mar 2002 Crime Masterworks (Book 4)
Travis McGee, beach bum and 'salvage expert' (he'll retrieve what you've lost for 50 per cent), lives on a houseboat in Fort Lauderdale. Instead of taking retirement at sixty, he takes it in chunks as he goes along. If he likes you he'll help you, and he likes Cathy Kerr, who has been robbed of everything but her dignity ... the first in the series establishes the fast-talking, wisecracking standard MacDonald maintained for over 20 years.

Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Orion; New edition edition (21 Mar 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752847678
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752847672
  • Product Dimensions: 19.2 x 12.8 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 674,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

John D MacDonald (1916-1986) MacDonald was born in Sharon, Pa, and educated at the Universities of Pennsylvania, Syracuse and Harvard, where he took an MBA in 1939. After war service in the Far East he wrote hundreds of stories for the pulps and over seventy novels, including the 21 in the Travis McGee sequence.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you enjoy modern crime series (Sue Grafton's Kinsey Milhone books, for instance) and want to try something harder-edged, then the Travis McGee books are a great find.

Trav is an anti-hero born of the 1960s. He's rough around the edges, a womaniser like Fleming's Commander Bond, a man's man. He can be brutal and he can be appallingly chauvanist -- but he's also got a dependable moral code of his own and the guts to go through with every investigation.

This is the first book in the series so is a natural place to start (but they don't affect each other too much so it's ok if you want to begin somewhere else).

MacDonald's writing is at times bleak, others harsh, frequently contemplative. You get a pulp thriller, plenty of action, a dash of mystery and violence, combined with a pessimistic outlook on American society. There are times when MacDonald's gripes with modern life get on my nerves -- but they are more than balanced by his knife-sharp prose, engaging characters and skillful situations.

And unlike many modern novels, the Travis McGee series are all bite-size books. They're easy to read in a couple of days, not 500-page bloated behemoths. Quality -- and quantity, cos there's nearly two dozen different ones to read if you enjoy the first one.

Thoroughly recommended.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Color him McGee in this 'must read'! 5 May 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
"Home is the 'Busted Flush,' 52-foot barge-type houseboat, Slip F-18, Bahia Mar, Lauderdale."
Is there any address in American literature so readily identified? Probably not. It's the home of Travis McGee, "knight in tarnished armor," and central character of the over-20 volumed series by John D. MacDonald.
With quite a following of readers around the world (my first McGee was while vacationing in Torremolinas years ago and needing something to read while soaking up the Spanish sunshine and absorbing the sangria deliciosa!), MacDonald's hero, along with his sometimes bizarre assortment of friends, enemies, and hangers-on, goes from one adventure to another. Each of the McGee books contains a color in the title, easily recognizable. And it's not purple prose either!
MacDonald, a best-selling novelist for years, has more than just a storyline to carry his books. Certainly, McGee is his principal concern. He's "retired" most of the time--he only goes back to work when he sees he's running out of money. He'd rather stay aboard his houseboat and entertain his friends that work. He claims he's taking his retirement one day at a time!
"The Deep Blue Good-by" is the first in this series, published in 1964. It is amazing, too, that in reading it here in the year 2000, the book still stands as relevant now as it was then. McGee, as usual, finds himself befriending and then helping out Cathy Kerr, who has come to him in desperation. Her misfortune has been to meet up with Junior Allen, "a smiling, freckle-face stranger" with depravity on his mind and a more odious person you don't want to meet. There is also something about missing inheritance.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fast moving story that draws you in instantly 29 Jan 2003
By A Customer
I discovered this book by accident through the crime master works series and loved it. The Deep Blue Goodbye is a hard-boiled novel in a similar vein to Hammett and Chandler. The main character Travis Magee is a flawed but honest fast talking tough guy; but Macdonald's' story is a lot more plot driven and his charichters more human.
The fast moving story draws you in straight away, Travis Magee couldn't refuse to help Kathy Keer, a dirt poor working girl, especially when she'd been wronged by a 'smiling man', who stole her Daddies hidden fortune. Travis agrees to find the mysterious stolen fortune, for half. Even though she doesn't know what it is or how her father got it - only that it has something to do with his war time service in India.
Travis Magee goes on a trip round Texas and New York as he tracks down her father's old war time comrades. Giving a very interesting insight into wartime smuggling between India and China. Travis also meets a past victim of the 'smiling man' and his cruel nature becomes all too apparent as Travis helps her recover.
Travis discovers what was stolen and finds the smiling man, all the way through the story he is warned of his wild animal cunning, advice he largely ignores. This builds the tension and leads to a battle royal of brutal and barbaric ferocity.
The novel often treats us to very sharp, beautiful, one liners, but I think it will for me always be in the shadow of Chandler, purely because he did it first. If this novel had any flaw it would be that the author often drifts into flights of fancy with abstract imagery and observation.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Master of Suspense creates a hero for the ages 22 Jun 1999
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Sit back and relax. Start at page 1 and take the ride of your life with Travis McGee. This first book in the series is an excellent starting point for first-timers because all the ingredients for the McGee stories are here-a lady in distress, a stolen "treasure", and a brutal unrelenting villain. MacDonald had a talent for involving you so deeply that you find yourself going back to re-read passages that hit you hard the first time. Junior Allen is a perfect villain--A force of nature motivated by greed with an ever-deepening bent towards sexual brutality. This book contains storytelling so vivid that you feel the punches with McGee. This book, along with Donald Hamilton's Death of a Citizen, is the perfect example of the 50s-60s Fawcett Originals.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The Deep Blue Good-Bye
If you've never read any of John D.McDonald's 'Travis McGee' books, you're missing out on a good thing ! Read more
Published 20 days ago by Chauffeur
5.0 out of 5 stars A present for my dad...
... who reported back that it was "very intelligently written" and had left him wanting to read more of the series. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Benedict
5.0 out of 5 stars Very exciting...
Very good... I always changed what I planned to do and ended up reading further in this book. It's very engaging.

I ordered the next one in the series already
Published 6 months ago by Ben Dumoulin
3.0 out of 5 stars A good read, but over priced for a shortish book. And flagrant...
For the story - 4 or 5 stars.

For the price and making it come up with Lee Child as author 1 star. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Q
4.0 out of 5 stars Not so deep, but good fun all the same,
He's a self-described beach bum who won his houseboat in a card game. He's also a knight errant who's wary of credit cards, retirement benefits, political... Read more
Published 17 months ago by col2910
4.0 out of 5 stars Cracking pulp fiction
If you enjoy modern crime series (Sue Grafton's Kinsey Milhone books, for instance) and want to try something harder-edged, then the Travis McGee books are a great find. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Rowena Hoseason
5.0 out of 5 stars MacDonald's Travis McGee: a man for the ages!
"Home is the `Busted Flush,' 52-foot barge-type houseboat, Slip F-18, Bahia Mar,

Is there any address in American literature so readily identified? Read more
Published on 5 July 2012 by Billy J. Hobbs
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best hardboiled antiheros, in a modestly plotted story
John D. MacDonald's protagonist Travis McGee describes himself as a "salvage Consultant". He recovers misappropriated or stolen items from various miscreants. Read more
Published on 24 July 2009 by One-Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of Its kind ever written
I picked up this book because of a recommendation and it is one of the finest crime thrillers I've ever read. Right up there with Raymond Chandler and Dashiel Hammett. Read more
Published on 4 Aug 2008 by Mr. P. Hobson
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